Today I’m reviewing this book full of short tales about the city of Bath and some of its previous inhabitants. Many thanks to Rachel’s Random Resources and the publisher for having me on the tour and sending me a copy of the book to review.
Blurb: Sometimes in Bath is a captivating story-tour through the city’s history conducted by Charles Nevin, the award-winning journalist, national newspaper columnist, author and humorist.
Beau Nash, Old King Bladud, young Horatio Nelson, Jane Austen’s Mr Bennet, the Emperor Haile Selassie and many more spring to life in episodes shimmering with the curious magic of Britain’s oldest resort and premier purveyor of good health, happiness and romance for the last 2000 years.
Each story has an afterword distinguishing the fiction from fact, adding enthralling historical detail – and giving visitors useful links to Bath’s many sights and fascinations Sometimes in Bath is warm, witty, wistful and will be loved by all who come to and from this most enchanting and enchanted of cities.
My Review: I’ve always liked historical sites, buildings, etc so it made sense many years ago for me to visit Bath. I don’t remember how the conversation came about but it did and I spent an unforgettable week there. Years later I was lucky enough to spend a week at the university which meant I could have another few days in Bath itself. Sadly I’ve not been back since and clearly travel at the moment is impossible, but this book brings the city to life and it was a joy to spend more time in this fabulous city.
The book is made up of a mixture of stories set in and around the city at various historical periods, with a variety of historical figures in them. I have to admit my favourite was the first one, although I also got a lot of joy from reading of the experience of Mr Bennet as a younger man. The first story introduced me to characters whose names I recognised and took me on a whirlwind romp around the city, all because of some buns. Equally though, the reason why this one was my favourite was because of the historical information after the story. I’ve been to the museum at the end of The Royal Crescent and the gardens at Prior Park and also loved the book, Tom Jones by Henry Fielding so to get all the extra information about these and the connection between Prior Park and Tom Jones was the icing on the cake for me.
The stories in this book feature a wide range of colourful characters and there is definitely something for everything in here. While the stories are partly educational, and the information at the end clarifies the accuracy and any tweaks made to true events, they are written in such a way as to be entertaining so you almost don’t realise you are learning at the same time.
This is a delightful book of stories about a fabulous city and I would recommend it to anyone who has visited Bath and anyone who wants to find out more about this beautiful city.
About the author:
Charles Nevin is a freelance journalist, author, exiled northerner and generally bemused observer of life and its turns.